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Re: Debian services and Debian infrastructure

This one time, at band camp, Lucas Nussbaum said:
> Hi,
> On 21/01/14 at 13:11 +0000, Stephen Gran wrote:
> > This one time, at band camp, Lucas Nussbaum said:
> > 
> > [...] single mail shot with no follow up.
> > 
> > Well, it's been a bit over 2 weeks, and you haven't posted a follow up.
> > This doesn't feel like a conversation to me.  I understand you're busy,
> > but it feels very much like you're not actually interested in engaging.
> > I find that slightly demoralizing.
> I'm not sure of what you would like me to follow up on? I've just
> re-checked, and emails from you in that thread did not include a single
> question.

I didn't think it was a Q&A session, I thought it was a discussion.  You
asked several questions, none of which had a completely concrete answer
in the thread, although several people offered opinions.  Even a mail
saying, "ok, I take this discussion to mean I should stop talking to DSA
and pay for a development environment somewhere" would have been useful.
I for one didn't take this mail thread to have reached that conclusion.

> Generally, I agree with everything that has been said in that thread
> (minor snarky comments from Joerg on m68k and 'real unrealistic
> requirements', but I didn't think it was worth replying to them).
> For example, I fully agree that we should try hard to host 'important'
> services on Debian hardware.  Also, I don't think that anybody disagrees
> that we have a problem with 'speculative' services (as you put it, or
> 'services development' as I put it). DSA cannot and should not provide
> hosting for all Debian-related services being developed, as you wrote
> yourself:
> > I don't think jumping straight to a solution that puts all of the
> > responsibility for every idea for a service in Debian on DSA shoulders is
> > either the only way to go or even a good way to go.  There are plenty
> > of bad ideas that should be allowed to wither on the vine, and there
> > are always going to be services that have been designed in such a way as
> > to be difficult to integrate into DSA-managed infrastructure.  We are,
> > after all, a reasonably small team of volunteers.  Pretending that we
> > can support an infinite number of services or an infinite variety of
> > designs is just going to end in disappointment for someone.

I think there's quite a range of options between "DSA can't host
everything under the sun" and "I'll go set up a private parallel
development environment out of project funds without any further

> Now, of course, I'm very disappointed that nobody from DSA is interested
> in acting as a gateway between service developers and hosting solutions
> outside of Debian infrastructure that would be suitable for services in
> development and experimental/maturing services. In my eyes, that would
> have been a win-win situation, by putting DSA in the perfect position to be
> aware of emerging services, and to interact early with service maintainers.
> But, well, I cannot force anyone to do work that they don't want to do.

So, I offered at one point to set up an openstack private cloud for DDs
to use for service development and so on.  I got almost as enthusiastic
a response to that as we got to kerberos, AFS, and now MQ.  I decided
to let it go instead of putting lots of energy into something that no
one would use.  That sort of thing can be revisited if it's actually
interesting for people.

I'm not sure what you picture when you talk about us acting as a
gateway.  Perhaps you could elaborate on that.  I'm not keen on playing
script monkey to set up machines for people - I'd much rather that
interested people be able to do that for themselves.  If you just want
us to be a point of contact for people developing new services, I think
we've said several times that we'd like to be just that.

> However, it sounded pointless to argue on that if there is no concrete
> offer to host Debian's services being developed outside of Debian
> infrastructure.  So, since that discussion, I've been talking to a few
> hosting providers, and two of them have offered to support Debian with
> free resources (on their clouds) for Debian development. Since I think
> that avoiding vendor lock-in is a must, I'd like to make sure that we
> can get a third one on board before working out further details. That
> will include deciding how allocation of such resources happen, and where
> discussion about this should happen. My first choice would be to use
> debian-services-admin@ for that, but of course that will be your decision
> as I don't want to 'pollute' the list with traffic you are not interested
> in.

No, that's precisely the sort of thing the list is for, I thought - it's
not a private list for DSA or anything.  Not sure where the word pollute
or its scare quotes have come from, but it sure feels hostile.  I'll
assume you don't mean it that way.

I have some operational questions about this cloud setup, since it seems
you've delegated running Debian owned machines to us and then gone and
got some that you don't want us to run.  I'm not sure what to do with
that disjuncture.

|   ,''`.                                            Stephen Gran |
|  : :' :                                        sgran@debian.org |
|  `. `'                        Debian user, admin, and developer |
|    `-                                     http://www.debian.org |

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